Suicide - Causes

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What are some possible causes of suicide?

Although the reasons why people commit suicide are multifaceted and complex, life circumstances that may immediately precede someone committing suicide include the time period of at least a week after discharge from a psychiatric hospital or a sudden change in how the person appears to feel (for example, much worse or much better). Examples of possible triggers (precipitants) for suicide are real or imagined losses, like the breakup of a romantic relationship, moving, loss (especially if by suicide) of a friend, loss of freedom, or loss of other privileges.

Firearms are by far the most common methods by which people take their life, accounting for nearly 60% of suicide deaths per year. Older people are more likely to kill themselves using a gun compared to younger people. Another suicide method used by some individuals is by threatening police officers, sometimes even with an unloaded gun or a fake weapon. That is commonly referred to as "suicide by cop." Although firearms are the most common way people complete suicide, trying to overdose on pills is the most common means by which people attempt to kill themselves.

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Comment from: penny0314, 65-74 Female (Caregiver) Published: January 10

Three things that seem to be missed: 1. The highest rate of suicide is found among gay teens. Bullying/harassment by peers and non-acceptance by family seem to be the major precipitating causes. 2. Inadequately treated, unrelenting pain is a cause of suicide. I have had a friend who killed herself for this reason. The American medical system chronically under-medicates and discounts the effect of pain. 3. Refusal to treat a treatable condition is also a slower method of suicide. I am definitely in that place, and #2 is a major factor in that.

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